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MassDOT participated in this month's three-day international conference in Boston about the latest developments in roadway tunnel operations, maintenance, security and technology.  Boston was selected to host this first conference organized by Arena International because it has the most sophisticated underground highway system in the country. 

Arena International worked diligently not only with MassDOT personnel but with many jurisdictions in the private and public sector to bring this conference together.  MassDOT partners at the NFPA and AASHTO also sponsored this important initiative.

MassDOT hosted several conference sessions, including Construction, Inspection and Maintenance- a summary of the different construction techniques and strategies used to implement the design of different tunnel structures in the Metropolitan Highway System, including immersed tube, cut and cover, and tunnel box jacking.  Delegates also gained first hand knowledge of the tunnel testing, maintenance and inspection protocols that have been developed to support tunnel operations, support public safety and security, and which have been adopted as a national model. 

In security planning and emergency preparedness, MassDOT provided an overview of how we work with multiple first responder agencies in developing a unified incident command structure in support of emergency response and recovery.  Our program was recognized by the FHWA/AASHTO Domestic Scan as a best practice in the nation.  MassDOT also outlined the steps a transportation agency can take to develop an emergency management program that complies with the latest Department of Homeland Security standards. 
Tunnels Conference, Dec 2010

On the last day of the Conference, delegates were offered the unique opportunity to visit our state of the art Highway Operations Center, left.  It is through the Highway Operations Center that we are able to provide a reliable and sustained means of monitoring state roadways and facilities, ensuring workplace and public safety on a 24 hour basis. It is responsible for detecting roadway incidents, receiving reports of roadway incidents, responding to facility alarms, managing security systems, and coordinating traffic operations, maintenance and emergency response activities. 

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